§ 57. Mr. PALING
asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware that the annual report of the chief medical officer of the Ministry for 1933 showed that the councils of eight counties, seven county boroughs, and five metropolitan boroughs have sent no confidential reports on maternal deaths to his Department; whether he has taken any steps to obtain such reports from these local authorities; and what action, if any, he has taken in regard to authorities which have furnished reports which do not include any comment or interpretation and show no evidence of careful investigation such as is regarded as essential by the chief medical officer?
Sir H. YOUNG
The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. As regards the second part, I have no power to require the submission of such reports, but every opportunity is taken of urging upon the local authorities the importance of co-operating in the desired inquiries. With regard to the last part of the question, I am informed that even in cases where the reporting medical officer does not feel justified in furnishing any comment on, or interpretation of, the facts disclosed, the reports do not necessarily lack evidence of careful investigation. I may add that the medical officers of my Department who examine the reports have the advantage of the 339 advice of two consultant obstetricians whose services have been retained for the purpose.